The enigmatic and often uninspired play of the
Habs was in full display this past week, costing the team a pair of key games,
and ultimately the coach’s job. The Bulldogs, who gained back their top
goal getter this week, took 3 of their 4 games. The trade deadline has
come and gone, what impact did it have on the Habs? Also, some analysis on
the firing of Coach Carbonneau, plus the grades, in the Recap.
8.00 to 10.00:
I) Stars/Superstars playing at or above performance, salary, and role expectations.
II) Above average players producing beyond performance, salary, and role expectations.
III) Average/Role players delivering well beyond performance, salary, and role
7.00 to 7.75:
I) Stars/Superstars playing below performance, salary, and role expectations.
II) Above average players producing at performance, salary, and role expectations.
III) Average/Role players delivering beyond performance, salary, and role expectations.
I) Stars/Superstars playing far below performance, salary, and role expectations.
II) Above average players producing below performance, salary, and role expectations.
III) Average/Role players delivering at performance, salary, and role expectations.
I) Stars/Superstars playing outrageously below performance, salary, and role
II) Above average players producing far below performance, salary, and role expectations.
III) Average/Role players delivering below performance, salary, and role
Not a great start to the week, but his last 2 games (allowing 1 goal each) were
more of what’s expected of him. (Previous:
In a week where there were few strong defensive moments, he had the majority of
those few. (Previous:
Decent in his own end, and I was really impressed with his mobility – he seems
quicker than he did earlier in the season. (Previous:
I was hoping that having Schneider would help ease the pressure off him and that
we’d see some improvement in his play. The early results appear to be
mixed. (Previous: 7.00 Average:
There were some suspect moments defensively, and the offence dried up pretty
quickly. Not surprisingly, so did the PP. (Previous:
Better in terms of his defensive play; this grade would’ve been closer to the
top if not for the penalties. (Previous:
After his Wednesday performance, not many should be arguing with the decision to
give him a rest. (Previous: 6.50 Average:
I can’t remember the last game where he didn’t make a blatant mistake – from one
of the "shutdown specialists," this isn’t good. (Previous:
7.75 Although the offensive
game wasn’t all there (1 point in 3 games), the tenacity in which he’s been
killing penalties is something to behold. (Previous:
7.25 Can’t argue with sticking
up for his teammates (although had he been assessed the 2-5-10, things may have
been different). (Previous: 7.25 Average:
7.00 A decent week, but given his
ice time and linemates (particularly for Sunday’s game), he needs to be
producing more. (Previous:
7.00 Started slow, but his on-ice
vision really shined through as the Dallas game progressed. (Previous:
7.00 One of the few players who
played well in all 3 games this week – problem is, only 1 point to show for it. (Previous:
7.00 Scored an absolutely
crucial goal vs Dallas, he needs to be opportunistic like that much more often. (Previous:
7.00 He was willing to step up
for his teammates, the highlight of an otherwise quiet week. (Previous:
6.75 A pair of subpar games,
but played better when separated from Kovalev (I swear I’ve made a similar
statement about 5 other times this year…). (Previous:
6.75 The team has lacked energy
over the past little while. As an energy player, this reflects poorly on
Played fairly well vs Dallas, but the other 2 games were reminiscent of the
disinterested, effortless play we’ve seen all too often. (Previous:
In his lone game, he didn’t exactly do much to warrant seeing more ice time
on a consistent basis, an opportunity wasted for sure. (Previous:
6.50 A much deserved healthy
scratch, he needs to get back to the things that earned him the callup in the
first place. (Previous: 6.75 Average:
6.50 He won some faceoffs which
is nice, but I was hoping for a little more considering that his all-round game
is supposed to be an upgrade to the lineup. (Previous:
6.25 A sad end to a sad season.
Hopefully he’ll be in better shape come next training camp. (Previous:
Cedrick Desjardins made the most of his playing
time, earning a pair of shutouts and a trio of victories to solidify Hamilton’s
3rd place positioning.
3 Stars: 1) Russell – HAM 2) LaCosta – SYR 3) Frischmon –
3 Stars: 1) Desjardins – HAM 2) Maxwell – HAM 3) Kostitsyn –
3 Stars: 1) Desjardins – HAM 2) Weber – HAM 3) Glumac –
3 Stars: 1) Williams – TOR 2) Sifers- TOR 3) Wyman –
The light may have went on for Sergei Kostitsyn
this week, as this was his best performance since his demotion.
Goals: Glumac (23)
Assists: Lehoux (36)
Points: Lehoux (53)
+/-: Chipchura/Jancevski (+22)
PIMS: Stewart (170) (Active leader: Flinn – 120)
March 13: Manitoba vs Hamilton
March 14: Manitoba vs Hamilton
March 15: Hamilton vs Rochester
Although the Habs weren’t directly involved on
D-day, some of the teams around them were active. Of the teams around them
(4-10), here’s my take on each team’s action:
Buffalo Sabres: Tellqvist should help stabilize the goalie spot for
now, but when Miller’s healthy, he won’t even dress. I’m not a big Moore
fan, and feel that losing Kotalik to make room for him is a step back.
Outlook: Steady as she goes at best.
Carolina Hurricanes: In my opinion, they overpaid to re-acquire
Erik Cole from the Oilers when you factor in the 2nd rounder. That being
said, it’s hard to argue with the short-term results. Outlook:
Improved, but will they be able to maintain their pace?
Florida Panthers: Swapping Welch for Eminger is an improvement, but
I don’t see that making or breaking their season. Outlook:
Improved, but not significant enough to be concerned.
New York Rangers: Adding Antropov will help, but when I look at the
Morris deal, I actually think they lost on that trade. As for Avery, that
could prove costly too. Outlook: Marginal upgrade at best.
Philadelphia Flyers: I know they like toughness, but losing a good
young guy for what will amount to be a 4th liner is a step back for sure,
especially when the player they acquired (McLaren) with the extra cap space
failed his physical. Outlook: They’ll be more physical, but
not as talented.
Pittsburgh Penguins: Picking up Guerin for what could be as low as
a 5th round pick is an absolute coup for GM Ray Shero. Firing Therrien and
bringing in Guerin and Kunitz finally gives them some depth up front.
Outlook: I can’t envision a scenario where they miss the playoffs now.
I had something else all planned to write for
this week, but after the decision was made to change coaches, I felt this would
be more topical.
I’d be lying if I said I was stunned to hear the news that Guy Carbonneau was
out as head coach, but the timing seemed a little surprising, considering it
came after a win. That being said, it’s the right call on a number of
levels. First, it worked just a few short years ago when the team made it
to the 2nd round, so Bob Gainey will have some confidence going into the room.
Also, when the GM is around all of these UFA’s daily, one would think there’s
going to be some extra motivation for the guys (the ones that want to stay at
least). With that in mind, one would think that some of these players will
step up their game.
If you believe the rumours around the media, the team has been playing to get
the coach fired – and that now has proven to be successful. It’s time to
step up to the plate and step up soon. Otherwise, they’ll only have
themselves to look at in the mirror – and you can be rest assured that Gainey
will be noticing this as well. The season just got a whole lot more
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